Ford Retains Owner Loyalty Title            

Ford Motor Co. retained the crown in the 2014 model year for most-loyal customers, while Maserati won top honors for conquests, according to the IHS Automotive Loyalty Awards.

IHS Automotive looked at nearly 16.5 million new-vehicle registrations and found that among both manufacturers and makes, Ford Motor and the Ford brand had the highest percentage of customers returning to buy or lease another Ford.

The U.S. automaker won in the overall loyalty to manufacturer and the loyalty to make categories for the fifth year in a row.

The results were announced Tuesday night at the 2015 Automotive News World Congress. IHS looked at registrations during the 2014 model year, which ran from Oct. 1, 2013, through Sept. 30, 2014.

Maserati took the customer conquest title for the highest conquest level as a percent of registrations.

The win was almost a gimme for the Italian sports car maker, which was all but nonexistent in the U.S. market in 2013 but saw sales surge under an aggressive expansion spurred by Sergio Marchionne, CEO of the make’s parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.

Maserati sales soared 171.5 percent to 12,943 vehicles in 2014, from just 4,768 the year before.

Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus luxury brand won the category for most improved in conquests as a percent of sales.

“As the overall market growth flattens, the competition for buyers returning to market has never been greater,” IHS Automotive Senior Vice President Edouard Tavernier said in a statement. “Manufacturers will need to continue to launch great new products to retain their customers, while driving aggressive conquest programs in order to be successful at growing their market share.”

The IHS Automotive Loyalty Awards are presented annually to automakers and brands that demonstrate a manufacturer’s ability to retain owners over repeat buying cycles.

In key segment loyalty awards, the Honda Accord was a repeat winner in the nonluxury traditional midsize car category.

The Nissan Leaf electric vehicle notched the best loyalty in the nonluxury traditional compact car segment.

The Chevrolet Silverado edged rivals in the nonluxury full-size half-ton pickup category. And the Jeep Grand Cherokee won in the nonluxury midsize SUV segment.

Photo Credit: Ford

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